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In Dow Jones news today, the Dow Jones Industrial Average hit a new record high after U.S. Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen offered a dovish testimony before the House Financial Services Committee.
Here are the numbers before the closing bell from Wednesday for the Dow, S&P 500, and Nasdaq:
|Index||Closing||Point Change||Percentage Change|
Now here's a closer look at today's most important market events and stocks, plus Thursday's economic calendar.
The Five Top Stock Market Stories for Wednesday
- Today, Federal Reserve Chair Janet Yellen spoke on the state of the U.S. economy and the central bank's plans for the final six months of 2017. During her testimony, Yellen said that the U.S. economy is still slowly growing. Strong U.S. business investment and increased household consumption has been complemented recently by stronger economic growth internationally, which is enhancing global trade and demand for U.S. products. Yellen said that they will slowly reduce the Fed's balance sheet and gradually hike interest rates this year and beyond.
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- Yellen's testimony pinged the value of the U.S. dollar and pushed commodity prices higher. Silver prices added more than 0.7%, while gold prices added 0.4%. The testimony also places a lot of scrutiny on the banking sector. The Fed has raised interest rates three times in the last eight months, which will impact the cost of borrowing at financial institutions around the country. On Friday, we'll receive the first big test from the second quarter when JPMorgan Chase & Co. (NYSE: JPM), Wells Fargo & Co. (NYSE: WFC), and Citigroup Inc. (NYSE: C) all report earnings.
- It was a tremendous day for the Fabulous Five tech stocks. Shares of Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq: MSFT), Facebook Inc. (Nasdaq: FB), Amazon.com Inc. (Nasdaq: AMZN), Alphabet Inc. (Nasdaq: GOOGL), and Apple Inc. (Nasdaq: AAPL) offered a big boost to the Nasdaq and the S&P 500 on the day. AMZN stock is back over $1,000 per share after the company announced results from a successful Prime Day. Is AMZN stock a buy?
- Crude oil prices pushed higher after the U.S. Energy Information Administration (EIA) announced a larger-than-expected drop in U.S. inventory levels. The government agency said that inventory levels fell by 7.6 million barrels last week, a figure more than twice what analysts had anticipated. The downturn in supplies offset news that U.S. production increased by nearly 60,000 barrels per day. Meanwhile, OPEC announced that output increased again in June, particularly in Nigeria and Libya. The WTI crude oil price today added 0.4%, and Brent crude gained 0.2%. While oil prices are hovering under $50.00 per barrel, markets can expect prices to be in a completely different place by September. Money Morning Global Energy Specialist Dr. Kent Moors offered his latest price outlook to investors. Check it out, right here.
- Finally, the financial media has been raving about the latest initial coin offerings (ICOs) as a digital get-rich-quick strategy. Despite all of hype, the reality is that other ICOs have largely disappointed this year. We break down what the media has been saying and why it's so important to know the real truth. Read more here.
Four Stocks to Watch Wednesday: SNAP, FAST, AAL, TWTR
- Things keep getting worse for shareholders of Snap Inc. (NYSE: SNAP). Shares of SNAP stock fell another 1% today as the stock continues to trade below its IPO level of $17.00. On Tuesday, shares fell more than 8% after Snap received a downgrade from Morgan Stanley (NYSE: MS), one of the firms that helped bring it public.
- In earnings news, shares of Fastenal Co.(Nasdaq: FAST) fell roughly 2% despite news that the company topped second-quarter earnings expectations. Wall Street had anticipated earnings per share (EPS) of $0.50 on top of $1.11 billion in revenue. The company slightly topped these expectations by reporting $0.52 on top of $1.12 billion in revenue.
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- Shares of American Airlines Group Inc. (Nasdaq: AAL) added nearly 4% after the company hiked its second-quarter revenue outlook. Shares hit a new 52-week high after the firm said it expects Q2 sales to jump between 5% and 6%. American Airlines wasn't the only company to report such optimism. Shares of United Continental Holdings Inc. (NYSE: UAL) jumped more than 4% after several investment banks hiked earnings expectations for the company.
- Shares of Twitter Inc. (NYSE: TWTR) added more than 3% after the company announced its new chief financial officer will be Ned Segal. Segal is a former executive at Goldman Sachs Group Inc. (NYSE: GS) and Intuit Inc. (Nasdaq: INTU).
Thursday's U.S. Economic Calendar (all times EDT)
- Jobless Claims at 8:30 a.m.
- PPI-FD at 8:30 a.m.
- Bloomberg Consumer Comfort Index at 9:45 a.m.
- Fed Chair Janet Yellen speaks at 10 a.m.
- EIA Natural Gas Report at 10:30 a.m.
- Three-Month Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
- Six-Month Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
- 52-Week Bill Announcement at 11 a.m.
- 10-Year TIPS Announcement at 11 a.m.
- Chicago Federal Reserve Bank President Charles Evans speaks at 11:30 a.m.
- Federal Reserve Governor Lael Brainard speaks at 1 p.m.
- 30-Year Bond Auction at 1 p.m.
- Treasury Budget at 2 p.m.
- Fed Balance Sheet at 4:30 p.m.
- Money Supply at 4:30 p.m.
About the Author
Garrett Baldwin is a globally recognized research economist, financial writer, and consultant with degrees from Northwestern, Johns Hopkins, Purdue, and Indiana University. He is a seasoned financial and political risk analyst, with a focus on stocks, hedge funds, private equity, blockchain, and housing policy. He has conducted risk assessment projects for clients in 27 countries, and consulted on policy and financial operations for some of the nation's largest financial institutions, including a $1.5 trillion credit fund, a $43 billion credit and auto loan giant, as well as two of the largest Wall Street banks by assets under management.
Garrett joined Money Map Press as an economist and researcher in 2011, specializing in alternative strategies with an emphasis on fundamental and technical analysis.